Wilson Online Reference
Marquess of Tavistock, 1739-1767
Connection to Wilson
Biographical Details
Francis Russell, Marquess of Tavistock was a British politician and the eldest son of John, 4th Duke of Bedford (1710-1771). He was educated at Westminster and Trinity College, Cambridge. From 1761 until 1767 he sat in the House of Commons as Whig Member for Bedfordshire. He went abroad in 1761, collecting antiquities in Italy together with Old Master paintings. While in Rome early in 1762 he sat to Batoni for a full-length portrait (Woburn Abbey). He also sat to Reynolds in England. In 1764 he married Lady Elizabeth Keppel, the youngest child of the 2nd Earl of Albemarle. They had three sons, Francis Russell, 5th Duke of Bedford (1765-1802), John Russell, 6th Duke of Bedford (1766-1839) and Lord William Russell (1767-1840). In the 1760s, the Marquis of Tavistock bought Houghton Conquest House, Bedfordshire and commissioned Wilson to paint it (see P160 below). The house was abandoned and dismantled in 1767 on his premature death after falling from his horse while out hunting.
Patronage of Works
Probably P56B Rome from the Villa Madama, National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa
P160 Houghton Conquest House, Bedfordshire, Trustees of the Bedford Estates, Woburn Abbey